"How are you doing?"
There is never a simple answer.
It depends on what minute of the day you're talking about. I would say, I'm good 75-85% of the day. But, every day, something reminds me of my new reality.
Maternity clothes delivered the day I got home from the hospital. The news so fresh even Amazon Prime couldn't pump the brakes fast enough.
The next morning, a barrage of e-mails and app alerts about what size my baby should be, since we marked her weekly milestones every Sunday. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as an 'unsubscribe from all my future plans' button.
Then there's social media. Do I even have to explain the Facebook effect at this point?
Worse, the ads. My Meme always says, 'I don't trust a phone smarter than I am.' Well, I sort of get it now. Since the internet can serve up ads catered to your every search history impulse, I'm constantly getting alerts about what crib I should buy. The internet won't let me forget the nursery I had planned, the maternity style I dreamed of, or the sweet little outfit I would bring our baby girl home in.
The first trip back to the gym, when spandex reminded me I definitely was not pregnant anymore.
The sad eyes at the grocery store, gym, gas station, the ones I imagine in my head, and the 'I'm praying for you's' which mean so much, but also make me tear up.
Getting on a scale. The only time in the history of my life I wish the numbers were higher, and the little gasp I let out was a reminder of a plus one on board.
My masochistic habit of sneaking into what would have been her nursery to look at her cute little clothes she'll never wear folded up in a drawer.
My check-up visit to my doctor. Walking in those same hospital doors again. Seeing a happy family get into a car to leave at the exact same spot I did, except instead of a dazed look and swollen, red eyes, they had balloons and two tiny bundles.
Some days, I think I'm almost 'normal,' again, and wham.
I think the hardest part is not being able to out think it. Austin is constantly giving me the reassurance I need. I know the stages of grief. I know I never actually met this tiny person. I know I have dealt with loss and grief before. I know we are young and can try again. I know there was probably something wrong, which is why my body did what it was supposed to do. I know late miscarriage is very unlikely to happen a second time. I know my hormones are partly to blame. I know 'at least we were able to get pregnant.' I know a lot of people are fighting much harder battles. I know God has a plan. I know time heals all wounds. I know it all.
Which is why I can't believe how hard this has been.
And why, if you are going through this, you need to know, you are not crazy, and you most certainly are not alone.
There has been such a weight lifted by hearing other family's stories. It's been such a blessing to hear so many of your stories. I know it's not a luxury a lot of families going through this get, which is why I want to share them with you: https://docs.google.com/
document/d/ 1pCqFcJLq1tV5KLeuMCZxC9Y53ZMTZ tuX5cgmPxWdRfo/edit?usp= sharing
All of that being said, I have learned the toughest lessons and the biggest blessings somehow come from the worst of times. I have never hugged my husband tighter, told him I loved him more, or felt his love more than I have in these past few weeks.
We've planned impromptu trips. We've talked about love and life. We've counted the many blessings we have and thanked God for the friends we are lucky to call ours. We've thought twice about sweating the small stuff. And, we've prioritized what we want in life.
I've learned grief isn't a competition and each person feels, deals, and heals differently. And, that's okay.
It's not a lesson I want to be taught twice, and I'm sure the lesson isn't over. The strangest part, writing this and reflecting, I think something my husband said the other day hits the nail on the head. He said, "I think we needed this." And I knew exactly what he meant. Not the pain, but the reality check.